Code of the District of Columbia

Subchapter I-A. Residency Requirements for Government Employees and Residency Preferences for Applicants.


§ 1–515.01. Definitions.

For the purposes of this subchapter:

(1) The definitions set forth in § 1-603.01, shall apply.

(2) "District government" means the government of the District of Columbia, including:

(A) Any department, agency, or instrumentality of the government of the District;

(B) Any independent agency of the District established under part F of subchapter IV of Chapter 2 of this title;

(C) Any agency, board, or commission established by the Mayor or the Council and any other agency, public authority, or public benefit corporation which has the authority to receive monies directly or indirectly from the District (other than monies received from the sale of goods, the provision of services, or the loaning of funds to the District); and

(D) The Council.

(3) "Highly compensated appointee" means an individual appointed to a position in the Career, Educational, or Management Supervisory Service, except for individuals appointed to a position as an employee of the Board of Trustees of the University of the District of Columbia, for which the starting annual salary is not less than $150,000 or the threshold figure established by the relevant personnel authority pursuant to § 1-515.03(c).


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 101; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)


§ 1–515.02. District residency preference for applicants.

(a)(1) All District subordinate agencies, independent agencies, and instrumentalities shall use a ranking system based on a scale of 100 points for all employment decisions for positions in, or positions equivalent to positions in, the Career Service, Educational Service, Legal Service, and Management Supervisory Service.

(2) Except for attorneys in the Senior Executive Service Attorney Service and attorneys in the Legal Service employed by the Council, for positions in the Career Service, Educational Service, Legal Service, and Management Supervisory Service, an individual who is a District resident at the time of application shall be awarded a 10-point hiring preference over a nonresident applicant; provided, that the individual claims the preference.

(3) For employees of subordinate agencies, independent agencies, and instrumentalities, the 10-point preference shall be in addition to any points awarded on the 100-point scale.

(b)(1) At the time of appointment, an individual who claimed the 10-point residency preference provided in subsection (a) of this section shall agree, in writing, to remain a District resident for a period of 7 consecutive years from the effective date of appointment into the position for which the individual claimed the residency preference.

(2) An individual who claimed the residency preference provided in subsection (a)(2) of this section and who fails to maintain District residency for 7 consecutive years from the individual's effective date of appointment shall forfeit the individual's District government employment.

(c) A personnel authority shall verify an individual's residency to ensure compliance with this section in accordance with § 1-515.04.

(d) Each applicant for a position covered by subsection (a) of this section shall be informed in writing of the provisions of this section at the time of application.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 101, 54 DCR 10993; Mar. 25, 2009, D.C. Law 17-353, § 223(a), 56 DCR 1117; renumbered as § 102 May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)

Prior Codifications

2001 Ed., § 1-515.01.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 17-353 validated a previously made technical correction in subsec. (a).

Editor's Notes

Section 7094 of D.C. Law 17-219 repealed section 301 of D.C. Law 17-108.


§ 1–515.03. District residency requirement for certain District government employees.

(a) An individual appointed to a position in one of the following categories shall become a District resident within 180 days after appointment:

(1) Subordinate agency head, independent agency head, or instrumentality head;

(2) Executive Service (§ 1-610.59);

(3) Excepted Service (§ 1-609.06(a));

(4) Senior Executive Service Attorney Service (§ 1-608.59(b));

(5) Legal Service of the Council (§ 1-608.59(b));

(6) Highly compensated appointee, hired after May 23, 2019.

(b) An individual appointed to a position covered by subsection (a) of this section who fails to remain a District resident for the duration of the individual's appointment shall forfeit the individual's District government employment.

(c)(1) A personnel authority may decrease the threshold salary for its highly compensated appointees in a particular service.

(2) A personnel authority may not raise the threshold salary for its highly compensated appointees higher than the increase by which the Mayor raised compensation for non-union employees in the same service in the same fiscal year.

(3) The Mayor shall publish any adjustment the Mayor makes to the highly compensated appointee threshold salary level in the District of Columbia Register no later than 45 days after the level is adjusted.

(d) The requirements of subsections (a) and (b) of this section shall not apply to an employee hired into a position covered by subsection (a)(1) of this section before May 23, 2019, to which such requirements did not apply as of May 23, 2019.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 103; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)


§ 1–515.04. Proof of District residency and enforcement.

(a)(1) A personnel authority shall verify District residency at the times described in paragraphs (2) and (3) of this subsection by requiring the individual to present:

(A) Physical proof that the individual possesses a valid non-expired driver's license or non-driver identification issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles; and

(B) Proof that the District government will deduct and withhold District income tax from the individual's wages pursuant to § 47-1812.08 for the purpose of the District government position the individual holds or for which the individual applied.

(2) For individuals appointed to a position covered by § 1-515.02(a)(1) after claiming the residency hiring preference provided in § 1-515.02(a)(2), the personnel authority shall verify District residency at the time of appointment.

(3) For individuals appointed to a position covered by § 1-515.03(a) or other law requiring District residency, the personnel authority shall verify District residency no later than180 days after appointment.

(b) The Mayor shall verify compliance with the District residency requirements of this subchapter, Chapter 6 of this title, and other relevant District laws on at least an annual basis for all subordinate and independent agency employees to whom such requirements apply by:

(1) Determining that:

(A) The employee possesses a valid non-expired driver's license or non-driver identification issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles through data accessed pursuant to subsection (d) of this section; and

(B) The District government deducts and withholds District income tax from the employee's wages pursuant to § 47-1812.08 for the purpose of the District government position held by the employee; and

(2) Conducting audits, periodically, as determined by the Mayor, which:

(A) Shall include:

(i) At least 20% of employees randomly selected within subordinate agencies; and

(ii) All employees within at least 3 randomly selected independent agencies; and

(B) May include requiring employees to present physical documentation of District residency and checking residency against District electronic records.

(c) If an individual subject to a residency requirement does not possess a valid non-expired driver's license or non-driver identification issued by the Department of Motor Vehicles at the time of verification, the individual shall provide other proof of residency as determined by the relevant personnel authority.

(d) For the purpose of verifying employee residency pursuant to this section, the director of the Department of Human Resources shall have sufficient access, as determined by the Mayor, to the electronic databases of the Department of Motor Vehicles to facilitate automated verification of driver licenses and non-driver identifications.

(e)(1) If the Mayor finds that an employee in a subordinate agency has failed to maintain the required residency, the Mayor shall remove the employee from his or her position.

(2)(A) If the Mayor finds that an employee in an independent agency has failed to maintain the required residency, the Mayor shall forward the finding to the corresponding personnel authority, which shall investigate and make a determination of whether the employee is a District resident.

(B) If the employee is determined not to be a District resident, the personnel authority shall remove the employee from the employee's position in accordance with rules adopted by the relevant personnel authority.

(f)(1) Before a personnel authority may remove an employee for failing to maintain District residency pursuant to the requirements of this subchapter, Chapter 6 of this title, or other relevant District law, the employee shall receive notice of the removal decision and an opportunity to appeal the decision pursuant to rules adopted by the relevant personnel authority.

(2) The Mayor shall establish the notice and appeal procedure required by this subsection for all subordinate agencies.

(g) The Council shall adopt rules for annually verifying employee compliance with the District residency requirements of this subchapter Chapter 6 of this title, and other relevant District laws.

(h) A personnel authority may adopt additional procedures, consistent with the requirements of this section, for verifying employee residency.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 104; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)


§ 1–515.05. Hardship Waivers.

(a)(1) When an employee in a subordinate agency suffers an extraordinary hardship because of exceptional circumstances beyond the employee's control, the employee may request that the Mayor suspend the residency requirements of §§ 1-515.02 and 1-515.03, Chapter 6 of this title, or other relevant District law for a period of no more than one year for such individual employee.

(2) The Mayor shall:

(A) Review the request;

(B) Verify if the hardship exists and necessitates residence outside of the District;

(C) Determine if a waiver is in the best interest of District government; and

(D) Determine whether to grant or deny a hardship waiver request within 30 days.

(b)(1) When an employee of an independent agency or the Council suffers an extraordinary hardship because of exceptional circumstances beyond the employee's control, the employee may request that the personnel authority suspend the residency requirements of §§ 1-515.02 and 1-515.03, Chapter 6 of this title, or other relevant District law for a period of no more than one year for such individual employee.

(2) The personnel authority shall:

(A) Review the request;

(B) Verify if the hardship exists and necessitates residence outside of the District,

(C) Determine if a waiver is in the best interest of District government; and

(D) Determine whether to grant or deny a hardship waiver request within 30 days.

(c) Notwithstanding subsections (a) and (b) of this section, a waiver of a residency requirement granted to an employee before May 23, 2019, shall continue to apply for as long as the employee holds the position for which the residency waiver was granted.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 105; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)


§ 1–515.06. Reporting.

(a)(1) By December 1 of each year, the Mayor shall submit to the Council an annual report detailing for the previous fiscal year and for each District government entity:

(A) The names of all new employees in District government and for each the:

(i) Pay schedule;

(ii) Position title; and

(iii) Jurisdiction of residence;

(B) The percent of new hires who are District residents;

(C) The name, position title, pay schedule, and description of hardship circumstances of any employee who received a waiver in the previous year pursuant to § 1-515.05; and

(D) The name, position title, and action taken with the reason for action taken, if any, for any incumbent employee who failed to maintain the residency requirements of §§ 1-515.02 and 1-515.03, Chapter 6 of this title, or other relevant District law during the calendar year.

(2) The Mayor shall integrate into each subordinate agency's annual performance objectives the target percentage of new hires and the target percentage of all employees who are District residents.

(3) The Mayor shall integrate all reports received pursuant to subsection (b) of this section into the report submitted to the Council pursuant to this subsection.

(b)[] By November 1 of each year, each independent agency, board, commission, instrumentality, and other District government entity shall submit to the Mayor an annual report detailing for the previous fiscal year:

[(1)] The names of all new employees and for each the:

[(A)] Pay schedule;

[(B)] Position title; and

[(C)] Jurisdiction of residence;

[(2)] The percent of new hires who are District residents;

[(3)] The name, position title, pay schedule, and description of hardship circumstances of any employee who received a waiver in the previous year pursuant to § 1-515.05; and

[(4)] The name, position title, and action taken with the reason for action taken, if any, for any incumbent employee who failed to maintain the residency requirements of §§ 1-515.02 and 1-515.03, Chapter 6 of this title, or other relevant District law during the fiscal year.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 106; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)


§ 1–515.07. Construction with other laws.

This subchapter may not be construed to conflict with the personnel authority granted to the Chief Financial Officer or Water and Sewer Authority under Chapter 2 of this title.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 107; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)


§ 1–515.08. Rules.

Within 180 days after May 23, 2019:

(1) The Mayor shall, pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2, issue final rules to implement [this subchapter].

(2) Each independent agency shall, pursuant to subchapter I of Chapter 5 of Title 2, issue final rules to implement the provisions of [this subchapter]; and

(3) A District government entity not covered by paragraph (1) or (2) of this section to which the requirements of this subchapter apply shall adopt rules or policies to implement the provisions of this subchapter.


(Feb. 6, 2008, D.C. Law 17-108, § 108; as added May 23, 2019, D.C. Law 22-315, § 2, 66 DCR 1983.)